Josh Taylor is reaping the benefits of home comforts as he prepares for his tilt at the World Boxing Super Series.
WBC silver champion Taylor faces unbeaten American Ryan Martin in Glasgow on November 3 after entering the super-lightweight tournament, the winner of which will walk away with IBF and WBA world titles.
Taylor became the number one WBC contender when he beat Ukrainian Viktor Postol in September, a performance which helped earn him the British Boxing Board of Control’s boxer of the year award.
But the Scot felt he was below par after the strain of sharing a hotel room for months with his friend and newly-crowned Commonwealth bantamweight champion, Lee McGregor.
And a move to his own flat has helped the Prestonpans boxer hit new levels in Shane McGuigan’s gym.
“I am settled in London now,” the 27-year-old said, “Part of the reason why I had a kind of off-night the last time, I was staying in a hotel for 14 weeks, and I was sharing a room with Lee McGregor.
“I love wee Lee, but sometimes you just need your own space. He was probably the same, being cooped up for 14 weeks with me, I can imagine that would drive him nuts sometimes.
“We never ever argue or ever once fell out, but there’s just times when you want a wee bit of your own space. You’re a man.
“If you had a bad day in sparring or feeling a bit s*** because of the pressures of the fight, there’s just times when you can’t be bothered talking to anybody, you just want to lie (by) yourself, and you don’t get the chance to do that in a hotel room. You just need a bit of privacy.
“And the hotel was about 40 minutes away on a train and I wasn’t getting back till half 10 at night sometimes, not able to eat properly because I was getting home so late. I was a bit frustrated the full camp, not able to relax.
“Whereas this time my flat is only a mile and a half up the road from the gym so I can go up the road in between sessions, chill out, get my dinner, go for a lie down if I’m feeling tired, and walk back to the gym. I am much more relaxed and it’s showing in the gym.
“Lee might even move in with me but at least he’s got his own room.”
Taylor is also feeling more confident after his unanimous points decision against Postol, who had only ever lost to the highly-regarded Terence Crawford.
“I learned a lot about myself,” Taylor said. “I knew I had the ingredients, but I now know for sure because I got tested in a few different ways. It went the 12 rounds for one, at a good pace, and I got tested boxing IQ and everything. I know I have got it there, so that pressure is off.
“The pressure is off having to win the fight to chase world titles. I am just more confident in myself and more relaxed.
“I needed that kind of acid test going into fights like this. Now I have, I am fully confident of winning this tournament.”